Several BBC male journalists agree to pay cut after gender gap revelation

The BBC is reporting that several of its highest-paid male broadcasters have agreed to take a pay cut after revelations of a gender divide in salaries.

Pay disparity came to wide public attention after resignation of BBC's China editor

BBC presenter Jeremy Vine is among the broadcasters who have agreed to a pay adjustment. (Neil Hall/Reuters)

The BBC is reporting that several of its highest-paid male broadcasters have agreed to take a pay cut after revelations of a gender divide in salaries.

The BBC said Friday that radio hosts Nicky Campbell, John Humphrys, Nick Robinson and Jeremy Vine and TV news journalists Huw Edwards and Jon Spoel had agreed to accept reduced salaries.

Some of the men appeared on a list released last year that revealed that two-thirds of the BBC's highest earners were men. Many BBC men were also found to be receiving far higher salaries than women in comparable jobs

The BBC's China editor, Carrie Gracie, quit her post earlier this month to protest what she called a failure to address the pay gap. Gracie did not appear on the list of broadcasters earning at least £150,000 ($262,000 Cdn) a year.

It wasn't immediately clear how or when the pay adjustment would be phased in for male broadcasters.

The news organization said in a statement on Friday it was grateful for their decision.

"These are great journalists and presenters, who have a real connection with the audience," the statement read. "We are proud to have them working at the BBC.

"The final details of some of these changes are still being discussed, and there are further conversations that the BBC will have with others in due course."

According to a BBC report, Sopel earned the least of the six men cited, but was in a salary band in which he was paid significantly higher than Gracie, at between £200,000 and £250,000 ($350,000 to $438,000 Cdn).

The announcement comes with senior management from the BBC due to appear next week before a government committee.

Jo Stevens, a Labour MP and member of the committee, told CBC News: "I think we've got a sense of them scrambling around, trying to put some measures in place before they come and give their evidence next week."

She said the committee will be interested in gathering information to see if the issue is widespread at the broadcaster.

"But I suppose my feeling today about the announcement is that this is not for individual male employees to make a gesture or volunteer to have their pay cut. The BBC management needs to solve this problem," Stevens said.

"Are they going to ask every single male employee who's paid more than the women doing the same job to volunteer to take a pay cut?"

With files from CBC News